Sometimes I read Scripture and the imagery brought to my mind is so vivid and clear it is as though I see myself in the stories being told. What an amazing and awesome experience it would have been to follow Jesus while he walked this earth.
One chapter of Scripture I recently read was in Acts. In Acts chapter two Luke writes about the day of Pentecost and the gift of the Holy Spirit being poured out upon the apostles. The visible tongues of fire which came to rest upon each of them would have been stunning to see. And the speaking of other languages as the Holy Spirit enabled them; what an astonishing experience to witness.
There were many who observed the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and who obeyed the command to repent, be baptized and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Luke writes that “about three thousand were added to their number that day”. It was like an instant mega church.
In the days that followed Pentecost the believers continued to meet regularly. They did this for fellowship with one another. The Greek word for fellowship in Acts 2:42 is koinonia which essentially means partnership. They gathered out of deep love for one another and a partnership to further the kingdom of Christ. Because of the gift of the Holy Spirit the believer’s hearts were bound together in supernatural affection for one another. They were now all part of one family.
As the apostles and converts met others would gather to witness the signs and wonders being performed. They also witnessed the genuine joy and love of believers who ate, worshipped, and fellowshipped together. I imagine the people of Jerusalem watching all of this and thinking, “I want to be part of this group!”. As Acts chapter two concludes Luke tells us that “the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved”. Can you envision it?
Gathering with other believers is vital. We are to spur one another on while meeting together. We are to encourage one another. (Heb 10:24-25) Believers should worship together with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit singing to God with gratitude. (Col 3:16)
I believe we are to gather so that others may see the koinonia we share through the gift of the Holy Spirit. I also think we are to gather to strengthen our koinonia. We are to “encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness”. (Heb 3:13) God never intended for us to live a life of solitude. We need the fellowship of other Christians and it is through the gift of the Holy Spirit we can enjoy that.
“Heavenly Father, thank You for the supernatural gift of koinonia. Thank You for a family of believers with whom we can fellowship and grow. We need each other, Father. The body of believers is a gift for each one of us. Fellowship with like-minded, Holy Spirit-filled believers builds us up through mutual love and encouragement which comes from You. May we never stop meeting together. In Jesus Name. Amen.”
Kami R. Lobner